Monday, September 12, 2005
NFL Week 1 Thoughts
NFL "EXPERT" Picks
Good Monday morning everyone!
First things first, congratulations to Chris Heintz on his first big league hit, a single to right field off of Cliff Lee. Second things second, I used to enjoy listening to Jon Miller and Joe Morgan. But Morgan says a lot of cliches, and Jon Miller is just not good, clearly not prepared. I mean, he started by calling Carlos Silva, Carlos Santos. Throughout the game, he called Jason Bartlett, Josh! Frustrating!
Thank you again, very much, for making SethSpeaks a part of your daily routine. Rather than make a typical Weekend Recap posting, I am just going to leave a number of posting that I made throughout the weekend. It started on Friday night when the Beloit Snappers' season ended with an extra-inning loss to Wisconsin. Saturday night, I got a little excited while watching a few callups perform for the Twins, so I posted some thoughts on Travis Bowyer and on Francisco Liriano's incredible inning. Then on Sunday afternoon, I posted a number of thoughts on the Vikings loss to Tampa Bay before adding a bunch more thoughts on the NFL's first weekend. Finally, I have a few thoughts on the Twins/Indians series, and the matchups for this week's series at Detroit. But first is an open letter to Twins manager Ron Gardenhire (cc'd to GM Terry Ryan). I hope you enjoy it and I'd love to hear your thoughts on it, and anything else you read today. Please e-mail me.
For those of you just looking to see how our expert NFL panelists have done, here is how things stand through Sunday's game. For the picks themselves, click here.
Trevor Born - 10/15
Will Young - 9/15
Mike Brasel - 9/15
Aaron Gleeman - 8/15
Grant Balfour - 8/15
Brent Hanson - 8/15
Cory Hepola - 8/15
Melissa Lien - 8/15
Kevin Slowey - 7/15
Seth Stohs - 7/15
Stick and Ball Guy - 7/15
Ben Jacobs - 7/15
Note - I hope you enjoy the format and the day. It would probably be best to start by reading the Open Letter, and then going to the bottom and work your way up from there.
OPEN LETTER TO GARDY...
Dear Mr. Gardenhire,
First, let me say thank you for the last three seasons in which the Twins won the AL Central Division and went into the playoffs. The team was always fun to watch and you could see just how hard they were playing. I understand that this has been a very tough year, and yet somehow, despite all of the injuries and lack of offense, the team is still over .500. I also appreciate that you have not let your players give up, continually saying that you will try to win until you are officially eliminated.
I think that it is now time to be a little realistic. The Twins will not make the playoffs in 2005. I know it isn't official yet, but it has been reality for at least a month. I think that now is the time to look to 2006, even in the season's final weeks.
The first assumption is that I mean start playing all rookies. Although that is part of what I am saying, it is certainly far from the whole.
In recent days, we have read that Brad Radke has been pitching with a bad shoulder. For the Twins to contend in 2006, Brad Radke is important. So please take care of him. If that means rest him for the rest of the season, do that. If that means a six man starting rotation, please do that.
We have known all season that Carlos Silva's knee was bad and will need surgery in the offseason. He was removed from the game last night, allegedly because of the knee. For the Twins to contend in 2006, Carlos Silva is important. So please take care of him. If that means shutting down his season so that he can have his knee surgery a month earlier, that gives him extra time to ensure that he is ready for 2006.
Kyle Lohse will likely not be back in 2006. Although he has not had a bad season at all, I would hope that the $3.5-$4 million he would win in arbitration for next year that that money would be used on a bat instead, especially considering there are younger, better options already on your staff. I would hope that we could trade him in the offseason, so he has to stay in the rotation to give him any value. But this is another case where a six-man rotation makes sense.
Johan Santana still has the numbers that, even though he won't be because of a lack of Wins, he should be considered a Cy Young candidate. Keep him on a starting every fifth day.
Scott Baker and Francisco Liriano are the future and will hopefully be pitching stars for years to come. They have both thrown a lot of pitches and innings this season already, so a six-man rotation makes sense for them.
So, who should be in the six-man rotation the rest of the way? How about Santana, Radke, Lohse, Baker, Liriano and Boof Bonser.
I am sure that your concern would be having enough pitching in the rotation and in the bullpen to be able to do this. As you can see, I would like to see Boof Bonser recalled. He had a very good AAA season and led the International League in strikeouts. He deserves a couple of starts to see what his future is. What about the bullpen? Willie Eyre had a great year at Rochester. He isn't on the 40 man roster, but deserves a recall. Luis Rivas won't/shouldn't be back next season, so what would it hurt to take him off the 40 man roster now? If you want to stay on the 40 man roster, David Gassner could come up, or even JD Durbin. Both had very rocky 2005 seasons, but they're both important to the Twins future, either in their bullpen or as possible trade bait.
It is good to see that you are finally playing Jason Bartlett every day at shortstop. It is good to see that Nick Punto is finally not in your daily lineup, which is a good thing. It would be good to see guys like Terry Tiffee and Luis Rodriguez get a little bit of a chance to see if they can compete for utility positions next season.
It will be any interesting offseason, I am sure. Boy would it be nice to see the Twins trade Shannon Stewart or Torii Hunter for a bat or two! I appreciate you giving Jacque Jones every chance to play and even against lefties. Sure, I thought he proved that he couldn't hit lefties three years ago. But for some reason you stuck with him. I appreciate everything that Jacque has done for this organization. I read somewhere that he might get a four year, $12 million contract on the free agency market. IF that is the case, trade Torii, and keep Jacque around, and move him to CF. So, for 2005, give Jacque some games in center.
I could go on for awhile. I have tried to remain positive throughout the season. It has become increasingly difficult to do so, and I don't want to bring up other issues here, like your bashing of your players in the media while continually sticking up for non-productive veterans, or a lot of in-game situations, and any number of other things.
To summarize, please start thinking to 2006. Please take care of Radke and Silva. Please keep Liriano and Baker in the rotation.
A .500 record is great! It is fun to have a team to cheer for that is always competitive. But as the rest of the division has gotten stronger and stronger, it has become more and more important for the Twins to get better to try to keep up. The Indians and Tigers will likely be better in 2006. The White Sox should still be decent. And well, the Royals can't be worse, can they? We have to keep up!!
Thank you again!!
OTHER NFL WEEK 1 THOUGHTS - Opening weekend of the NFL season is always exciting. For me, it doesn't come close to the excitement of Opening Day of the MLB season, but it is still fun. Maybe a huge part of that is playing fantasy football. I don't pay much attention to the NFL from whenever the Vikings are out of the playoffs until I need to start thinking about fantasy football drafts. But I do like to keep tabs on things throughout the NFL season. Here are some thoughts that I had during today's games:
I have absolutely never understood the
disdain for Brett Favre that so many people have. I guess Vikings
fans can dislike him simply because he plays for the Packers, and I guess
that is their right. However, some people I talk to don't even admit to
having respect for the Quarterback, something I think is absolutely
ridiculous. He has put up numbers for years. I think he has to go down as
one of the Top 10 quarterbacks in NFL history. And he has won a Super Bowl
championship. So why the complete dislike for Favre? I think I understand
now. I blame... the media. That's right, the media is at fault. They have
tried so hard to make him into something bigger than football, bigger than
the league. Fans hate that! Fans are not dumb. We understand what is
happening. Everything Favre does is glorified. Take today's game as an
example. I saw him throw a 10 yard out pattern. He made a good throw. The
announcers talked for three minutes about the strength of his arm. It was a
good pass, but it isn't like it was something other quarterbacks couldn't
I guess I would compare it to the Yankees and Derek Jeter. First, the Yankees deserve some respect for constantly winning, no matter how they chose to do it. Second, Derek Jeter is probably one of the top 10 shortstops of all-time, and he's still just 31 years old. He has won championships. He has a clean record. He does charity work. He does everything that people expect their stars to do. Yet, fans can not stand him. Why? Well, I think that Tim McCarver is a huge reason for this. He and every other announcer and TV personality tout him as the greatest thing since sliced bread.
In both Favre's and Jeter's case, it is not their play or their persona that make them disliked. It is the media constantly telling us how wonderful and perfect that both are.
We were told yesterday that the Vikings Ciatrick Fason led the SEC in rushing last year, just ahead of Ronnie Brown. However, it is probably necessary to point out that Ronnie Brown and Cadillac Williams both played for Auburn. Brown was drafted second overall by the Dolphins while Williams was taken fifth by the Buccaneers. Yesterday, Brown rushed 22 times for 57 yards. Williams rushed 27 times for 148 yards, including his 71 yard run late in the fourth quarter.
Speaking of RB duos, how about the
combination in Kansas City. Here is the breakdown:
Priest Holmes - 22 carries for 85 yards, 1 catch for 5 yards - 1 touchdown
Larry Johnson - 9 carries for 110 yards, 1 catch for 11 yards - 2 touchdowns
Holmes is the starter, but I think we all knew that Johnson would start getting more playing time. In the end, that is a good thing. If it means that Holmes can stay healthy all season, that would be ideal!
Down by four, with under a minute to go, the San Diego Chargers had the ball, first and goal on the 7 yard line. Three incompletions and an interception later, and you can't help but wonder if the presence of Antonio Gates would have made things turn out differently.
In that same game... what are the odds of Keyhawn Johnson scoring not one, but two touchdowns in a single game?!
Hey, Gus Frerotte went 24-36 for 275 yards and two TDs. I suppose there are some out there who still think that he should be starting for the Vikings, right?
Good to see that Saints get a win over the Panthers. I am sure it has been tough to prepare for a football game the last week or so. Trying to be helpful around the community. Trying to memorize a play book and a game plan. All the while trying to relocate your family. Good for them.
It was also see, in the same game, the Panthers' Steve Smith make a nice comeback from missing all but a couple of plays last season.
Minnesota native Larry Fitzgerald had quite a day in the Arizona Cardinals' loss to the Giants. He had 13 catches for 155 yards and a touchdown.
Jerome Bettis is hurt. Duce Staley is hurt. So, the Steelers gave the starting RB job to rookie Willie Parker. He ended up being the star of the day! He rushed 22 times for 161 yards and a TD. He also had a 48 yard reception. Not a bad debut!
The Rams Marc Bulger threw for 362 yards. All four Rams receivers had more than 60 yards receiving. Interesting to see the breakdown of touches between Stephen Jackson and Marshall Faulk. Jackson had 19 rushes and three catches. Faulk had three rushes and a four yard reception. Unlike the Chiefs situation, it looks Jackson is the #1 with Faulk the clear #2. Not a bad guy to have coming off the bench in case of injury.
I may add some thoughts on the Colts/Ravens game later if anything interesting happens.
Did you have any thoughts on Weeks 1's games? E-mail me.
VIKINGS FALL TO BUCCS 24-13 - That was an awful football game to watch for anyone who considers themselves a Vikings fan, especially for those of us who felt that if there was one certainty, it was the Vikings offense. In the first half, the Vikings had just 66 total yards. Daunte Culpepper threw two interceptions and fumbled another time! The defense had actually done very well, despite those yardage totals (229 in the first half). the Buccaneers didn't do anything special on offense. Brian Griese was not good either. But they took advantages of mismatches and did enough to score. The funny thing is that, as poorly as the Vikings played, they had a chance to win inside the final two minutes. Then Culpepper threw another interception and the game was over for all intents and purposes. A Cadillac Williams 73 yard run on 3rd and 1 iced the game in the end. Here are some thoughts on the game:
Moe Williams started and on the first play of the game, he was hit at the line of scrimmage but made an 8 yard run out of it. Sure, the next play was a sack back to the original line of scrimmage, but on third down, Williams caught a 25 yard pass. Williams is what he is, and usually he is very dependable. Not so much yesterday, especially in their final drive. He fumbled once, which he never does. And then Culpepper threw the interception, but it was on a very catchable ball that Moe should have caught. Of course, he also recovered Jim Kleinsasser's fumble on that same drive.
I'm still as big of a supporter of Daunte Culpepper as the best QB in football, and Nate Burleson being an All-Pro caliber WR. However, it was not a good day for them. Burleson caught just three balls for 45 yards. On Daunte's first interception, there was a miscommunication between the two. Culpepper expected Burleson to cut into the middle of the field, and he didn't. On Daunte's fumble, he faked a pass to Burleson and it slipped out of his hand. However, if you watched closely enough, Culpepper called an audible and Burleson didn't really acknowledge it. It was supposed to be a quick throw to Burleson, but the WR was not there.
So many are probably going to say that this type of performance was the result of losing Randy Moss. I would say that it is really only half-true. I would concede that, in part it was. Why? Because when you miss someone that important, a go-to guy, it is going to take some adjustment into the season to see who Culpepper can count on. However, I think that within a few weeks, we will find that there is probably more talent at the WR position overall than there has been. Culpepper will continue to throw the ball to lots of receivers and at that time, the offense will be very dangerous.
As disappointing as the Culpepper/Burleson combination was, it was good to see that, in crunch time, Culpepper was really throwing to Burleson.
His other favorite receiver is TE Jermaine Wiggins. Wiggins caught four balls for 33 yards, but he also had two TD catches called back because of penalties. On the first, he was called for offensive interference on a call that replays showed clearly was incorrect.
I was very impressed with the defense. The new guys really came through. Pat Williams was a disruptive force on the line particularly when Kevin Williams was doubled. Obviously the big play of the games for the Vikings was the 88 yard interception return by Darren Sharper. He was in on several other plays. Fred Smoot also had an interception. The thing I noticed about all three of them was their ability to tackle. Corey Chavous looked better. We didn't even really notice Antoine Winfield. That is a good thing when talking about cornerbacks because the only time they really get noticed is when they get burnt. I was very impressed with Keith Newman, particularly in the first half.
It seems like the only time the defense got hurt was when the Buccs took advantage of other players like Rod Davis and Ralph Brown. It also seemed like a lot of the starters on the defense took time off, especially late in the game. Is that a case of not playing enough in the preseason games, at game speed? I still contend that there are too many preseason games and starters should not play much in them. However, is it possible that the Vikings didn't play enough?
I have to admit, I don't' like listening to the regular TV broadcast of the game. It's boring and the announcers really come across as uninformed. No, I listened to the radio broadcast with Paul Allen and Joe Senser. Many seem to want to complain about Allen, but I happen to think that he is great to listen to. First, football is an emotional game. I would hope that your announcers would speak with emotion. As long as you can hear clearly and understand him, it is great! Also, Paul Allen is incredibly knowledgeable of the game. He knows the players, keeps up with them through the week, clearly studies as he is ready with his stats when needed. He is the play-by-play guy and he knows when, and what questions to ask Senser. Add in the occasional on-field information from Greg Coleman, who also isn't afraid to voice an opinion, positive or negative, and you've got a great, informative game to listen to! The only negative is the three or four second delay. You hear the radio call, and then it happens in the game.
If you're at all interested in Vikings football and some great analysis, listen to Paul Allen and the other great spots talk cast at KFAN here.
Paul Allen line of the game, "(Keith) Newman destroyed Cadillac! Cadillac was reduced to a Pinto!"
The kicking game was a concern going into the game. I think that is no longer the case. Paul Edinger made a 22 yard field goal after easily kicking a 53 yarder in the third quarter! He made his extra-point (as he has never missed one in his career). His kickoffs weren't great, usually being fielded between the 10 and 16 yard line. However, his last one went all the way down to the three.
The Vikings signed punter Chris Kluwe just this week. Kluwe averaged 54.3 yards on his four punts. I think it is safe to say that the team has its kicker for (hopefully) the next dozen years.
Do you have any thoughts on the Vikings performance? E-mail me.
Star-Tribune's Top 10 Twins Prospects - Lavelle E. Neal III wrote either his, or the Tribune's Top 10 list of prospects. I am currently working on a Top 50 Twins prospect list, and although I know that the top two will be the same, there will be some fairly significant differences!!!
THIS JUST IN - Saturday night, 8:37 pm - The Twins are batting in the bottom of the 9th with a five run deficit, but the reason I am writing now is to discuss the second big league outing of Francisco Liriano. He pitched the bottom of the 8th inning against Cleveland's 4-5-6 hitters. It also marked the Major League Debut of catcher Chris Heintz! Let's break it down pitch-by-pitch:
To Travis Hafner:
Slider - 89 - Strike
Fastball - 97 - Ball
Slider - 90 - Ball
Slider - 86 - Strike
Slider - 86 - Strikeout!
To Victor Martinez:
Fastball - 96 - Ball
Changeup - 84 - Strike
Slider - 88 - Strike
Slider - 89 - Strikeout Looking
To Ronnie Belliard:
Slider - 88 - Strike
Fastball - 95 - Ball
Changeup - 82 - Ball
Fastball - 96 - Ball
Slider - 87 - Strike
Slider - 88 - Strikeout
(Sidenote - First, I need to point out that Justin Morneau just hit a pinch-hit 3 run homer to cut the deficit to 7-5. Bob Wickman is coming into the game.)
OK, back to Liriano, there were a couple of things that got me even more excited about him. First, he really didn't have control of his fastball. He threw four of them (97, 96, 95, 96) and none of them were strikes. Even without control of his fastball, he was able to get out two great hitters and a guy who was an All-Star a year ago. He threw a lot of sliders. Obviously the scouting report so far on Liriano says to be ready for an upper-90s fastball, so if he is controlling a slider in the 86-90 range, he's lethal! Add in a changeup in which his fluid arm motion does not change, and he could be amazing! I also wonder what pitches would have been called had Mike Redmond stayed in to catch Liriano. As a veteran, he probably would have kept trying to establish the fastball, whereas Heintz just went right to the slider when is an incredible pitch. He threw nine sliders, eight of them for strikes.
I try to restrain my enthusiasm for pitching prospects because I do believe in the "there's no such thing as a pitching prospect" thing. Mark Prior is as good a pitching prospect as there has ever been, and he's struggled with injuries, so no one is exempt from that possibility. However, with healthy, I really believe that you can put Francisco Liriano in the same category or classification as Felix Hernandez. Yes, really!
(Sidenote - Wickman came in and got Juan Castro to strikeout to end the game. The Indians now have a 1.5 game lead in the AL Wild Card race.)
Travis Bowyer made his major league debut tonight as well. It really wasn't a fair situation. JC Romero loaded the bases with nobody out when Bowyer was summoned from the bullpen. Here are hit pitches:
To Aaron Boone:
Fastball - 97 - Ball
Fastball - 96 - Strike
Fastball - 98 - Ball
Fastball - 97 - Sacrifice Fly to left field
To Casey Blake:
Fastball - 97 - Ball
Fastball - 97 - Ball
Fastball - 97 - Single to left
And then he was taken out in favor of Terry Mulholland as Grady Sizemore was due up.
Summary - Bowyer came into an impossible situation. We all know that he has to work on his offspeed pitches in order to get big league hitters out. That showed tonight when bottom of the order hitters pulled Bowyer's 97 mph fastballs. But again, he couldn't really throw other pitches anyway because the bases were loaded. I do believe that Bowyer will be just fine. He will be a solid, if not dominant, big league reliever. He just needs to get into a game to start an inning before we can really fairly analyze where he is at.
Any thoughts? E-mail me.
Oh, by the way, I read in the Strib today that Brad Radke will be pitching until the team is out of contention despite his arm hurting. Does anyone out there really still think that the Twins are still in contention? I mean, really? Maybe get Radke one more start, then get Boof Bonser up here! Get Liriano in the rotation, and let Radke rest. Also, maybe let Silva make a couple more starts and then let him get his knee taken care of earlier than planned. Just some ideas. It's time to start thinking about 2006!
THIS JUST IN - Friday night, 9:30 pm - With an out in the 10th inning, JP Martinez, pitching in his third inning, gave up a two run homer to Michael Wilson. The Snappers lost 4-2, ending their season. Kevin Slowey started and gave up two runs in seven innings. David Winfree was 3-5. Paul Kelly went 2-4. Johnny Woodard hit a 2 run homer in the 5th inning to tie the game. Martinez had thrown two shutout innings before the 10th. Congrats to the Snappers on an excellent season!
Tonight, Randy Moss and the Oakland Raiders and New England Patriots collide in the NFL's first regular season game of the year. It is the second straight year that the defending champs will be playing the season's first game. So, it is time to bring back our NFL "Expert" Picks. This year, we have added a couple of more 'experts' so it should be a lot of fun. Last year, Ryan Maus, who wrote Twins Chatter until earlier this summer, beat out Melissa Olson and Mike Brasel by just one game, and Aaron Gleeman (who won it two years ago) by two games in the overall record.
For 2005, we have added a couple new Twins bloggers. However, I am especially excited to announce two celebrities who will be making picks each week. I feel very fortunate to announce that Twins reliever Grant Balfour, and Kevin Slowey, the Twins 2nd round pick in June, will be on this panel. Here is a quick look at them and the rest of our panelists:
Stick and Ball Guy - writer of the site, you guessed it, Stick and Ball Guy - SBG is one of my favorite writers online. His thoughts and opinions are always smart and sharp and incredibly interesting and thought-provoking. He talks baseball, football and basketball knowledgeably. This is his first year on this panel and will do a good job.
Ben Jacobs - Fantasy Sports Writer at The Hardball Times - If you want great information or ideas about fantasy sports, baseball in particular, your should definitely check out Ben's articles. Ben returns in an attempt to improve over his 157-99 (61%) 2004 season. In 2003, he was accurate on 68% of his picks.
Aaron Gleeman - writer of Aaron's Baseball Blog and the co-creator of and contributor to The Hardball Times. He can also be read at FoxSports.com, Rotoworld and Insider Baseball - In the world of Baseball blogging, there is one name that stands out above all others, and that is Aaron Gleeman. His thoughts and statistical analysis are so well written and thought out that it is a must-read. The 22 year old college student takes classes and still writes up multiple articles a day for his sites. Gleeman returns this year to reclaim his lost title. In 2003, he accurately chose almost 69% of games. Last year, he correctly picked 67% of games and finished in 4th, just two games behind the winner.
Grant Balfour - Relief Pitcher for the Minnesota Twins - Recently, Balfour was kind enough to agree to pick games for this site for the whole year. That is very kind of him. As you can imagine, he has quite the schedule rehabbing from Tommy John surgery that he had in March. In 2004, we saw the incredible pitching ability that he possesses, especially in Game 4 of their playoff series against the Yankees. The 27 year old from Sydney, Australia, will hopefully be back in time for the 2006 season opener to make an already strong Twins bullpen even stronger!
Kevin Slowey - Twins Starting Pitching Prospect - currently pitching for the Beloit Snappers of the Midwest League - Slowey was the Twins 2nd round pick (73rd overall) just this past June after a stellar three year career at Winthrop University. He signed quickly and appeared out of the bullpen in four games for Elizabethton where he struck out 15 in 7.2 innings. He was promoted to Beloit where he stayed in the bullpen for a few outings before entering the starting rotation. He pitched in 13 games (9 starts) there and was 3-2 with a 2.24 ERA. In 64.1 innings, he struck out a very impressive 69 batters while walking just eight. He could be the next Twins 2nd round pick to rise quickly through the organization like Jesse Crain and Scott Baker before him.
Will Young - writer of Will's Minnesota Twins Site - Will's site is great. He has really been making use of the Win Probability charts on his site of late. His incites on the Twins are great. His infamous "Matt LeCroy is my non-sexual man crush" t-shirt got him a few meetings with the Twins burly righty. Will also updates the Twins Organizational Big Board. This is Will's first year making football picks for this site and I am thrilled that he is doing this!
Trevor Born - writer of The Twins Junkie - Trevor is a 16 year old high school student who started his website last year. He has done an excellent job on his site, particularly in securing some very good interviews. I met Trevor and The Twins Geek down at the State Fair as they invited us to appear on-air for part of the Twins Talk show. He tells me that football ranks as his third favorite sport behind baseball and basketball. He prefers the Gophers, but is still a rabid NFL fan.
Brent Hanson - writer of BrentNet - I coached Brent in baseball about ten years ago when he was a 13 year old in Perham, MN. A couple of years ago, he started his blog, BrentNet, which discusses sports, the Twins, the Vikings, politics, music, and pretty much anything and everything. It is certainly a site I check daily. Currently, Brent is working on another blog, the Minnesota Sports Blog (click here if you want a quick preview of what you can expect. Understand that the site is still under construction) which will cover all Minnesota sports from professional to the college ranks and probably more. I look forward to seeing that site!
Cory Hepola - Sports Anchor at KTVH-TV in Helena, Montana, also see coryhepola.com - I coached Cory for a few years, from Little League through Babe Ruth. He was one of the good kids. He was also quite the basketball player in high school. After four years at my alma mater, Concordia College, Cory is now a sports anchor. He has a strong relationship with members of Helena's rookie league team. But it does seem that football is Cory's best sport. How much does he know? Well, last March, when I was vacationing in Florida, Cory wrote a guest column for me in which he discussed the Vikings offseason moves at that time. Well, I guess we'll see how he did. This is Cory's first year on the panel.
Mike Brasel - One of my best friends since we were both about 6. He is listed as the left fielder for my Best Players Iíve Played Ball With team. After serving in the Navy for 6 years, Mike went back to school and became an engineer. Heís also a pretty smart football person, who I turn to for fantasy football advice!!
Melissa Lien - editor, proofreader of www.SethSpeaks.net - Missy is a great friend and big football fan. She was instrumental in the development of this site and originally was the publisher of the site. After finishing eighth out of nine two year ago, Missy came back to finish just one game behind the winner last year.
(Correct picks in red)
Seth Stohs Stick & Ball Guy Ben Jacobs Aaron Gleeman Grant Balfour Kevin Slowey SethSpeaks.net Stick & Ball Guy Hardball Times Aaron's BB Blog Minnesota Twins Pitcher Twins Pitching Prospect Oakland @ New England Patriots Patriots Patriots Patriots Patriots Patriots Chicago @ Washington Redskins Redskins Bears Redskins Bears Redskins Cincinnati @ Cleveland Bengals Browns Bengals Bengals Bengals Browns Denver @ Miami Broncos Broncos Broncos Broncos Broncos Dolphins Houston @ Buffalo Bills Bills Bills Texans Texans Bills New Orleans @ Carolina Panthers Panthers Panthers Panthers Panthers Saints NY Jets @ Kansas City Chiefs Jets Chiefs Chiefs Jets Jets Seattle @ Jacksonville Seahawks Jaguars Jaguars Jaguars Jaguars Seahawks Tampa Bay @ Minnesota Vikings Vikings Vikings Vikings Vikings Vikings Tennessee @ Pittsburgh Titans Steelers Steelers Steelers Steelers Steelers Arizona @ NY Giants Cardinals Giants Cardinals Giants Giants Cardinals Dallas @ San Diego Chargers Chargers Chargers Chargers Cowboys Chargers Green Bay @ Detroit Lions Packers Packers Packers Packers Packers St. Louis @ San Francisco Rams Rams Rams Rams Rams Rams Indianapolis @ Baltimore Colts Colts Ravens Colts Colts Colts Philadelphia @ Atlanta Falcons Falcons Eagles Eagles Eagles Eagles
Will Young Trevor Born Brent Hanson Cory Hepola Mike Brasel Melissa Lien Will's Twins Weblog Twins Junkie BrentNet KTVH-TV Fantasy FB Guru SethSpeaks.net Oakland @ New England Patriots Patriots Patriots Patriots Patriots Patriots Chicago @ Washington Redskins Redskins Redskins Redskins Redskins Redskins Cincinnati @ Cleveland Bengals Bengals Bengals Bengals Bengals Bengals Denver @ Miami Broncos Broncos Broncos Broncos Broncos Broncos Houston @ Buffalo Bills Bills Bills Bills Bills Bills New Orleans @ Carolina Panthers Panthers Panthers Panthers Panthers Panthers NY Jets @ Kansas City Chiefs Chiefs Chiefs Chiefs Jets Jets Seattle @ Jacksonville Jaguars Jaguars Seahawks Jaguars Jaguars Jaguars Tampa Bay @ Minnesota Vikings Vikings Vikings Vikings Vikings Vikings Tennessee @ Pittsburgh Steelers Steelers Steelers Steelers Steelers Steelers Arizona @ NY Giants Cardinals Giants Giants Giants Giants Giants Dallas @ San Diego Cowboys Chargers Chargers Chargers Chargers Chargers Green Bay @ Detroit Packers Lions Packers Packers Lions Packers St. Louis @ San Francisco Rams Rams Rams Rams Rams Rams Indianapolis @ Baltimore Colts Colts Colts Ravens Colts Colts Philadelphia @ Atlanta Eagles Eagles Eagles Falcons Falcons Falcons
Looking at the selections of the 12 panelists, here is who the collective "We" think will win each game:
Oakland @ New England - Patriots 12-0
Chicago @ Washington -Redskins 10-2
Cincinnati @ Cleveland - Bengals 10-2
Denver @ Miami - Broncos 11-1
Houston @ Buffalo - Bills 10-2
New Orleans @ Carolina - Panthers 11-1
NY Jets @ Kansas City - Chiefs 7-5
Seattle @ Jacksonville - Jaguars 9-3
Tampa Bay @ Minnesota - Vikings 12-0
Tennessee @ Pittsburgh - Steelers 11-1
Arizona @ NY Giants - Giants 8-4
Dallas @ San Diego - Chargers 10-2
Green Bay @ Detroit - Packers 9-3
St. Louis @ San Francisco - Rams 12-0
Indianapolis @ Baltimore - Colts 11-1
Philadelphia @ Falcons - Eagles 7-5
That is it for me for today. If you have any questions or comments, or ideas for future postings, please e-mail me.
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